memory mail art

memory mail art
handmade envelope (front), mail art, 3.7 x 8 inches

I am a firm believer in education, and there are many avenues to educating oneself. Just going to your local library or bookstore is a start to learning something new or expanding on something you already know.
Last year, I mentioned the greek classics class I was taking on cousera. This year they started offering art classes, and I joined their art and concepts course offered through Pennsylvania State University. Have you heard of

Cousera is "an education company that partners with the top universities and organizations in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free." These university classes require tests, essays and assignments.

The Memory

My assignment this week is creating a mail art piece that stems from a memory.

mail art memory handmade envelope
handmade envelope, collage, line drawing and stamped bird

My earliest memory is not really something I remember exactly, but something that my Mom told me about. When I was around three years old, I disappeared. We lived out in the country and Mom looked everywhere for me, shouting out my name, but I was nowhere to be found. As she continued to look for me, she said I just showed up suddenly, looking like a ghost, covered in dust. That would not be the first time, I took off to explore. Looking back, I realize more fully my Mom's wisdom. She stayed patient and sound of mind through all my escapades, giving me just enough trust and freedom to explore. And I always knew that Mom would be there to welcome me back.

The Process

envelope pattern on 140# paper

Starting out with a store-bought envelope, then taking it apart, I fashioned a pattern cut down to the size that I wanted for my envelope, 9.5 cm x 20.5 cm. After tracing the envelope pattern onto 140# watercolor paper, I cut out the envelope and scored the paper at the points where the flaps would fold.

The background are washes of acrylic paints, collaged elements and images from my handmade stamps.
I haven't yet finished the insert letter, and I'm already excited about that as it will include a pop-up. This mail art will eventually be heading out to my last living Uncle.

What are you exploring lately?

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